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Issues Receiving Email in Exchange 2003 - SPF

Posted on 2007-04-02
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Last Modified: 2010-03-06
Hi all, I am running Windows 2003 Server R2 SP1 and Exchange Server 2003 SP2, and have been since the start of November '06 without any issues, along with a WatchGuard router. Over the past two weeks I have suddenly had various clients ringing and saying that email to us is being returned and pointing them to the SPF error. These are clients that have been emailing us for 10 years in some cases and most use different ISP's. Nothing has changed at our end (no updates etc.. in that time). Our MX record points to a 3rd party AntiVirus/AntiSpam vendor and then forwards to our external IP. I have spoken to both that 3rd party vendor and also our ISP provider who assure me that they haven't turned on SPF filtering although I believe the issue must lay with one of them. Am I missing something?
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Question by:WorkSupport
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LVL 104

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by:Sembee
Sembee earned 125 total points
ID: 18840340
On the NDR it should say which server is rejecting the message. If it is the client's own server then it is your third party vendor that is rejecting the message. Get one of those being rejected to send you the text of the NDR some other means and then send it to the third party supplier.

When dealing with third party suppliers of email services I find that the best thing is to presume that they are lying unless shown otherwise. Saves a lot of frustration and you don't tear your hair out.

Simon.
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Burns2007 earned 125 total points
ID: 18840394
To confirm it has never reached your exchange, you can go into message tracking and do a search on one of the senders that has been rejected. If it got to your exchange and was rejected there, it'll come up in the message tracking and advise that an NDR was created.
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by:WorkSupport
ID: 18840438
Thanks Simon. I did and do think that it probably does lie with our 3rd party antivirus company but so far they have been far from helpful. I have got two of the NDR's from different clients, one is rejected by our 3rd party av/as providers mail server whilst the other is rejected by a bigpond server (we are not with).
Burns2007: I am following that up as we speak, just getting some clients to send through now so that I have a definite test time.

Glen.
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LVL 104

Assisted Solution

by:Sembee
Sembee earned 125 total points
ID: 18842485
Bigpond is a major ISP, so that could be who the sender of the message is using.
This looks like it is an issue with your service provider - you may have to escalate the problem to get someone to look at it for you.

Simon.
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Author Comment

by:WorkSupport
ID: 18848668
OK, some news, it appears that more and more ISP's and private networks are moving to SPF to eliminate SPAM and this is the reason for some increased failures. Have got around two of the clients problem as they were sending emails straight out to the web instead of through their provider or mail application. Will keep this updated over the next day, thanks for your help to this stage.
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